"Why did Lorrie Ann look graceful in beat-up Keds and shorts a bit too small for her? Why was it charming when she snorted from laughing too hard? Yes, we were jealous of her, and yet we did not hate her. She was never so much as teased by us, we roaming and bratty girls of Corona del Mar, thieves of corn nuts and orange soda, abusers of lip gloss and foul language."
An astonishing debut about friendships made in youth, The Girls from Corona del Mar is a fiercely beautiful novel about how these bonds, challenged by loss, illness, parenthood, and distance, either break or endure.
Mia and Lorrie Ann are lifelong friends: hard-hearted Mia and untouchably beautiful, kind Lorrie Ann. While Mia struggles with a mother who drinks, a pregnancy at 15, and younger brothers she loves but can’t quite be good to, Lorrie Ann is luminous, surrounded by her close-knit family, immune to the mistakes that mar her best friend’s life. Then a sudden loss catapults Lorrie Ann into tragedy: things fall apart, and then fall further - and there is nothing Mia can do to help. And as good, brave, fair Lorrie Ann stops being so good, Mia begins to question just who this woman is, and what that question means about them both.
A staggeringly honest, deeply felt novel of family, motherhood, loyalty, and the myth of the perfect friendship, The Girls from Corona del Mar asks just how well we know those we love, what we owe our children, and who we are without our friends.
©2014 Rufi Thorpe (P)2014 Random House Audio
"This literary novel will leave readers questioning the myths and realities of complicated friendships." (Booklist)
"The divergent paths of two girls raised in a Southern California beach town plot the course for Thorpe's affecting debut novel.... Thorpe unflinchingly examines the psychological tug-of-war between friends, and delves in to the pro-choice debate and issues relating to medical malpractice to give the personal narrative heft. The result is a nuanced portrait of two women who are sisters in everything but name." (Publishers Weekly)
Short, Simple, No Spoilers
I expected a story of the perfect girl and the jealous one living in her shadow; like "Beaches". What I read was a raw and honest look at how friendship begins and changes from adolescence through early adulthood. Mia views Lori Ann as the good one, but over time experiencing many tragedies the two struggle to adapt to their current situations and maintain that strong childhood friendship bond. Most intriguing is the idea of how perception doesn't always match reality. Rebecca Lowman is an amazing narrator.
i like to read. i like to listen.
it's one of the best books i've read this year. definitely top 5 for 2014.
the emotional rawness of each of the characters
it's hard to choose a favorite scene...the book is full of tragic snippets of these two girls/women and each is devastating and beautiful and raw all at the same time.
the end of the book really made me rethink my notions of both characters.
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